An interview with.. Dot Allison

After 4 long years since her last LP ‘We Are Science’ Dot Allison is making a quiet if significant return to record shops this month with her new 3 track EP ‘Beneath The Sky.’

This acoustic set is a far cry from the electric meanderings of the very impressive ‘We Are Science,’ showing Dot's diversity as a musician once more. That’s what’s so refreshing about Dot Allison; her ability to play happily with any toy she finds, finding inspiration in life’s hidden pathways as opposed to the main road.

Her sound may change from project to project, but what does remain constant is her ever so beautiful voice. Haunted, searching and leaving you utterly breathless, Dot Allison knows how to lure an ear.
Second track ‘Blade of Words’ is a prime example of this. The very basic western sound plays as rough as possible as Dot’s voice seeps in and out, chanting and building a song that never wants to climax.
‘Paper Rose’ is a wonderful continuation of this desolate Western sound. Dot is this time appearing in her most ghostly vocal form yet, as she tells us ‘You’re in Heaven’ in Afterglow’s ‘Colour Me.’

Those waiting for a new album will not have a long wait. It’s being completed as we speak and will be out in the very near future.

A Short Conversation with Dot Allison

You’ve have come along way since One Dove, And you are recording a new album now?

DA: Yes.

There has been quiet a large time gap between each album that has been produced. Has there been any specific reason for this?

DA: Sometimes it’s been because of changing labels, between the last one and now. I’ve did 2 years literally of on the road with Massive Attack and then Pete Doherty.
So that ate a lot of time up.

Have you been writing new material in that time as well?

DA: Yes quite a lot in the past year.

Is it nice being back in the studio again?

DA: Yeah. I mean doing the 2 years of touring…

It took a lot out of you?

DA: It took a lot out of me and it made me really keen to get back to the studio. Cause it’s like anything, you can get a bit cabin fevered in the studio and then equally on the road you can just get like road touring dementia.

The New EP, “Beneath the Sky”, is there anything in particular that has influenced the songs on it?

DA: Johnny Cash American Recordings were a kind of influence in as much as I was listening to them a lot. I like the idea of a voice carrying a song in a guitar.
The album is quite psychedelic actually, but the EP is very stripped back.

The sound is a very different one from We Are Science, ‘cause that was very electronic and experimental even. You say the album is psychedelic – what kind of sound are you going for, if anything, overall?

DA: It’s got a bit of a sound actually. It’s kind of like travelling back to the 60’s. Taking a bit of Nick Drake, a bit of Neil Young, a bit of Dusty and Memphis and it has a very sort of modern fingerprint to it. It’s not a pastiche.

Would you say retro-sounding, or retro-psychedelic?

DA: It’s Country-Psych I would call it.

You certainly give each project a different feel, for example the last single ‘Strung Out’ from the last album. Put that next to ‘Close Your Eyes’ from Afterglow and they are very different – but you can still tell that it’s you singing. So it’s certainly good news that you are continuing to delve into new territory.

DA: Yes I definitely am. I'm leaving the kind of fashion element out of it. Almost like what people are listening to, Djing, or you know the last album. It’s almost like going back to absolutes like a classic pop album, but it’s not as polished and it’s a lot more psychedelic than that.

Have you done any Djing at all?

DA: Not recently but I’ve just got an agent. It’s the same agent as Manny and Shaun Ryder. Cause they play a classic pop set. And I just kinda work where my head is at.

Is there any producer or artist who you would like to collaborate with in the future?

DA: Yeah. I’d like to work with Nick Cave.

Doesn’t everybody?

DA: Yeah everybody I know. PJ Harvey I’d like to work with.

Have you seen Nick Cave's last film he worked on, the Proposition?

DA: I haven’t seen it. He did the score too didn’t he? Just the way his mind works. It’s very poetic. It’s a very colourful and poetic way of articulating it’s lovely.

When do you think the new material will be ready for release?

DA: It will be nearing completion at the end of this month. But we need to get a label for it. We’re nearly there.

And what about live ventures?

DA: 14th August we’ll be at the Bush Hall in Shepherds Bush.

Will there be a more lengthy tour plan for when you are ready to promote the new album?

DA: Yeah, but it all depends on budgets and we’ll cut back if we need to.

Is there anything in particular that you have for your live sets? In terms of video, or whatever your budget allows?

DA: At the moment I guess it's just quite organic.

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